Regulatory agencies around the world have found sucralose to be a safe ingredient for use in food. A recent review by the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) hypothesized that sucralose use in foods heated during their manufacture might pose a health risk, by resulting in the formation of certain chlorinated compounds; specifically, polychlorinated dibenzodioxins (PCDDs), polychlorinateddibenzofurans (PCDFs) and/or free or bound 3-monochloropropanediol (3-MCPD), some of which are considered potential carcinogens. The BfR further encouraged the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), which is in the process of conducting a staged re-evaluation of a range of food additives, including sucralose, to specifically address their hypothesis. This paper reports the results of new studies requested by EFSA to analyze for the presence of PCDDs, PCDFs and 3-MCPDs in a range of foods. As requested, foods were prepared with typical sucralose use levels and thermally processed under typical food processing conditions. The presence of the compounds of interest were analyzed using validated and accepted analytical methods (e.g. US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA); American Oil Chemists Society (AOCS)). The results of these new analytical studies show no evidence for the formation of these compounds due to sucralose presence. This paper also reports a critical analysis of the studies cited in the BfR review as the basis for its hypothesis. This analysis shows that the cited studies do not represent food manufacturing conditions and are thus not reliable for predicting the fate of sucralose in foods. This work reaffirms that sucralose is safe for use in food manufacture, including when heating is required.
The analyses presented in the study by Gujral et al. rejects the hypothesis formulated by the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) that particular harmful compounds might occur when sucralose is heated to high temperatures. Indeed, there is no evidence for the formation of these compounds due to sucralose presence.
This study reconfirms the conclusions of food safety authorities around the world, that the low/no calorie sweetener sucralose is safe for use in food and drinks, including in heated manufactured foods, under typical food processing conditions.